The City owns and is currently developing the best commercial property in Northeast Louisiana into a mixed-use commercial park at Interstate 20 and Downing Pines Road. Interstate 20 is the region's primary traffic thoroughfare and the traffic count at Downing Pines is the highest in the area (67,000 cars per day). To provide ideal traffic access, the City has constructed a full interstate interchange that feeds cars directly to the property.
The Ike Hamilton Expo Center (“the Ike”) is already located at Downing Pines. The Ike opened at the beginning of 2002 and was constructed to attract large horse/livestock events. Its goal is to bring tourists to West Monroe and, as a result, create a large economic impact. From its first day, the Ike has been the #1 tourist attraction and an important economic engine in the region.
The City is developing the land in front of the Ike into a first-class, open-air retail center (what the retail industry calls a “lifestyle center”). In Northeast Louisiana, West Monroe is the hub for restaurants, hotels, and entertainment. But, we lack a comparable strength in retail. Given the growth that we have experienced over the past 10 years, the City is positioned to, as a result, see tremendous retail growth and this prime location for a retail center will help make this growth a reality.
South of the retail property, the City has land available for new office buildings and industrial facilities. Expo Circle, in the middle of our property, has sites available for new office building projects. Land behind the Expo Center is available for industrial projects. We will only sell sites to projects that will result in the creation of new, good-paying jobs for the community.